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Taking the "Phone" Out of Mobile Phone

Nokia and Microsoft look to do battle over the next generation of mobile phones, so called "smartphones" that will give users the possiblity of sending video emails and lightning fast internet access.


Surfing on the go, on your mobile phone.

Sometime last year, everyone who was ever going to get a mobile phone did, leaving the booming mobile phone industry scratching their heads as to where to go next.

It appears they’ve got an answer.

Finnish mobile phone giant Nokia and Microsoft announced this week at the world's largest mobile phone industry conference in Cannes that they have unveiled alliances with computer circuit maker Texas Instruments to put forth competing "smartphones".

The phones plan to leave the phones of today in the dust and make use of the faster, next generation mobile network with features allowing users to send video e-mails and book plane tickets through very fast internet access.

The software giant weighs in

Microsoft announced earlier in the week that it would provide mobile phone makers with kits that allow them to build their own smartphones. Up until now, mobile phone makers would have develop their own designs, contributing to ever-climbing costs.

The kits would be the first step in an effort to standardize the new generation of mobile phones. They would cut makers’ development costs but also allow them to bring forth unique designs and features.

The Seattle-based software mammoth is being joined by Intel in its venture. The goal is for Microsoft-Intel to create industry standards in the mobile phone business much in the same way they have in the software industry.

Microsoft has experienced success with its hand-held PocketPC. The goal is to now transfer that software into a mobile phone, giving users computer capabilities only five years old on their phones.

The Fighting Finns

Not to be left behind, Nokia, which produces two out of every five mobile phones in use on earth, fired back a few days after the Microsoft announcement this week with one of their own.

They too had allied themselves with Texas Instruments, they said, and planned to offer similar kits to phone makers. Nokia apparently wants to rally other European mobile phone makers to fight off Microsoft’s ventures into the market.

Nokia plans to allow rivals access to its terminal software, then combine it with Texas Instruments hardware. The result could be phones that pack computer chips more powerful than desktops five years ago.

Nokia plant to make the hardware and software kit should be available by the Fall. Microsoft and Intel plan to unveil their new smartphone by the end of the year.

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